So, you work for the county, a big company, or some other organization, and you’re looking at being laid off because of budget matters? Have you noticed that most people being let go are part of the last-hired, first-fired syndrome?
The liberal Democrats that you are surrounded by now surprise you by the number of Black people being cut. You’re asking, “What are we going to do? I have been working around these Democrats that love Black folks. Heck! Blacks are being kicked out by the power group. What should I do?”
First, if you dare challenge the Democrats’ environment, ask for a meeting with the power people. These are the ones who protect the dominant group. Tell them — yes, tell, not ask — to have the matter of “last hired, first fired” as an agenda item at your next meeting.
Caution: The liberal will fight this request, while most known Republicans in the workplace will believe it to be a good idea. Once you are on the agenda and attending the meeting, let me give you some points the Black conservative would bring up.
I would start by saying, “Lucky Rosenbloom is not a manger, supervisor, or within the hierarchy of the company’s power group. However, as a lower group member of this team, I am asking those of you in power to consider what is obvious but easily avoided because of its unpleasantness: the last-hired, first-fired syndrome.”
As competition and bumping develops, members of the privileged groups tend to solidify the boundaries that exist between them, derogate the people of color, and believe that their own groups are superior in terms of the last-hired, first-fired syndrome. In short, White liberals have a system established where they survive in higher numbers than people of color and women.
If you have a “diversity committee,” indicate which of you as mangers and supervisors have noticed employees who once were friends now acting differently towards each other because of layoffs and competition (bumping, etc.). Not to mention the quiet issues of gender/race, whether some areas will go back to looking like the privileged group.
Laying off all the people of color and women will once again sustain an organization that does not reflect the population served. At this point the White conservatives will say, “Good job, continue,” and the liberal will start to feel uneasy.
I continue: “I am left to wonder how the in group, the superior group in our organization reacts to my bringing up the issue of “last hired, first fired” with respect to women and people of color. How many of you are aware of the Supreme Court case Firefighters Local Union No. 1784 v. Scotts, making it somewhat lawful to fire the people of color and women in favor of Whites?
Read this case, because one of your friendly liberal Democrats will bring it up. Do not fear; the conservative “Mr. Lucky” will give you a response to this tactic.
The court appears to have offered legitimate reasons for recognizing the need to maintain women/people of color during layoffs. The fact that you have a diversity committee (if you do) demonstrates previous racism in this organization.
Name a few incidents, if you dare. Most of us agree at the table that we have had patterns of racism/sexism in the workplace, correct? Allow time for answers.
Now, it would be a lot easier to avoid this subject and hide behind unions and contracts as the scapegoats. History has shown that one such as me, of the perceived lower group that raises such issues, is marginalized by the members of the privileged group — dominance. Therefore, recognizing this, I cannot give in to the expectancy of acting inferior by remaining silent with all of you within a group we call “diversity” in which we model respecting each other’s opinions.
Here is where you will get into serious trouble. Repeat this word for word. Have we asked ourselves the most difficult question? Why does racism in the workplace exist?
I will answer this one. It’s easier to focus on why, instead of who. Who targets what group; what person, when it comes to unfairness and discrimination, is moving us into the issue of layoffs and questioning what the workplace will look like.
Surely you are not the only one asking this question. If so, we still have a long ways to go.
My question: I am but a low person within the organization; are the ones in the power group willing to tackle this issue head on, or will we allow ourselves to use the unions and contracts as scapegoats?
One of you reading this should be saying, “Amen, thank you, Lucky. Once again you have told the truth about liberal Democrats and proved a method of dealing with their racism.”
Lucky Rosenbloom welcomes reader responses to 612-661-0923, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.